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8.11: The Prefixes Spelled <in>

Difficulty Level: At Grade Created by: CK-12
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The Prefixes Spelled <in>

1. English has two prefixes that are spelled <in>. One means “in”; the other means “no, not.” Each of the following words contains one of these in- prefixes. Analyze each word into prefix and stem:

Word = Prefix + Stem
include = +
independent = +
invisible = +
involve = +
incomplete = +
insignificant = +
invent = +
insane = +
inexpensive = +
intend = +
inspect = +
insist = +

2. Find the six words among these twelve in which in- means “no, not.” The in- means “no, not” if the word means just the opposite of the stem that's left after you take away in-. For instance, independent means “not dependent,” just the opposite of dependent So the in- in independent means “not.” Now sort the twelve words into these two groups:

Words in which
means “no, not” does not mean “no, not”

4. The meaning of the in- that means “in” can be difficult to see in some words, because the meanings of the words have changed so much over the centuries. The following words contain the in- that means “in.” For each we’ve given you the stem and its original meaning. Be ready to discuss the connection between the original meaning of the prefix and stem and the modern meaning of each word. For instance, how is our meaning of include like shutting in or closing in?

Word Stem Meaning of Stem
include clude “shut, close”
involve volve “roll, turn”
invent vent “come”
intend tend “stretch”
inspect spect “look”
insist sist “stand”

Word Venn. Into circle A put only words that contain the sound [t]. In circle B put only words that contain some form of the prefix sub-. In circle C put only words that contain one of the prefixes in-:


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Date Created:
Feb 23, 2012
Last Modified:
Oct 09, 2015
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